China’s New Antipollution Push Could Cool Its Growth Engine

Keith Bradsher
New York Times
China’s minister for environmental protection said Monday that even tougher measures will be coming. 

Chinese Property Boom Props up Xi’s Hopes for the Economy

Tom Hancock
Financial Times
Ocean Flower Island is a vision of luxury, Chinese-style. A man-made archipelago off the coast of the tropical island of Hainan in the South China Sea, it will boast thousands of apartments, 28 museums and 58 hotels including one which is “7-star...

China’s Reform Hopefuls Watch for Names. Only One May Matter.

Keith Bradsher
New York Times
A decade ago, this city in southeastern China had a reputation as one of the country’s grimmest, with smoggy skies, chronic traffic jams and streams so foul that they had to be paved over to contain the stench.

China Is Quietly Reshaping the World

Anja Manuel
Atlantic
The Pakistani town of Gwadar was until recently filled with the dust-colored cinderblock houses of about 50,000 fishermen. Ringed by cliffs, desert, and the Arabian Sea, it was at the forgotten edge of the earth. Now it’s one centerpiece of China’s...

The Human Cost of China’s Economic Reforms

Robin Brant
BBC
Mr Yu is worried that millions of workers the Chinese government plans to lay off from failing state owned companies will be “abandoned” like he says he was 15 years ago.

How China's Financial Cracks Could Spread

Aaron Back
Wall Street Journal
Can financial turmoil in China play havoc with the rest of the world? It has already happened.

China's Pollution Crackdown Is Gaining Momentum

Bloomberg News
Bloomberg
That political will overlaps with an economic need to rein in surplus production of steel, aluminum and other basic materials after years of over-investment. How and when that capacity gets replaced will be a key factor in the economy’s performance...

Books

09.27.17

Cracking the China Conundrum

Yukon Huang
China’s rise is altering global power relations, reshaping economic debates, and commanding tremendous public attention. Despite extensive media and academic scrutiny, the conventional wisdom about China’s economy is often wrong. Cracking the China Conundrum provides a holistic and contrarian view of China’s major economic, political, and foreign policy issues.Yukon Huang trenchantly addresses widely accepted yet misguided views in the analysis of China’s economy. He examines arguments about the causes and effects of China’s possible debt and property market bubbles, trade and investment relations with the West, the links between corruption and political liberalization in a growing economy, and Beijing’s more assertive foreign policies. Huang explains that such misconceptions arise in part because China’s economic system is unprecedented in many ways—namely because it’s driven by both the market and state—which complicates the task of designing accurate and adaptable analysis and research. Further, China’s size, regional diversity, and uniquely decentralized administrative system pose difficulties for making generalizations and comparisons from micro to macro levels when trying to interpret China’s economic state accurately.This book not only interprets the ideologies that experts continue building misguided theories upon, but also examines the contributing factors to this puzzle. Cracking the China Conundrum provides an enlightening and corrective viewpoint on several major economic and political foreign policy concerns currently shaping China’s economic environment. —Oxford University Press{chop}Related Reading:“What the West Gets Wrong About China’s Economy,” Yukon Huang, Foreign Affairs, September 14, 2017“Challenging Conventional Wisdom,” Chen Weihua, China Daily, April 28, 2017“Cracking China’s Debt Conundrum,” Yukon Huang, Financial Times, December 6, 2016“Despite Slower Growth, China’s Economy Is Undergoing Major Changes,” NPR Interview with Yukon Huang, January 19, 2016

S&P Downgrades China, Says Rising Debt Is Stoking Economic, Financial Risks

Elias Glenn
Reuters
S&P’s one-notch downgrade to A+ from AA- comes as Beijing grapples with the challenges of containing financial risks stemming from years of credit-fueled stimulus to meet ambitious government economic growth targets.

China's Path out of Poverty Can Never Be Repeated at Scale by a Country Again

Zheping Huang, Tripti Lahiri
Quartz
Since China began its market reforms in the late 1970s, it has lifted more than 800 million people out of poverty, slashing the rate from nearly 90% in 1981 to under 2%, as measured by the World Bank’s latest spending benchmark.

China, Like U.S., Struggles to Revive Industrial Heartland

Michael Schuman
New York Times
The hulking, brown–brick industrial plants lining the roads were once the backbone of this gritty city. Today, they are outdated and unwanted, and the region is one of the Chinese economy’s most troubled. 

China Says Economy Unaffected by Environmental Inspections

South China Morning Post
China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection said that recent environmental inspections did not hurt the country’s economy and blamed some ”inappropriate methods” conducted by local authorities for causing short–term market dislocation.

Exclusive: China's Belt and Road Acquisitions Surge despite Outbound Capital Crackdown

Kane Wu and Sumeet Chatterjee
Reuters
Mergers and acquisitions by Chinese companies in countries that are part of the Belt and Road initiative are soaring, even as Beijing cracks down on China’s acquisitive conglomerates to restrict capital outflows.

A ‘Spectacular’ Trend Is Transforming the World’s Second Largest Economy, Stephen Roach Says

Stephanie Landsman
CNBC
China's economy is a lot more resilient than the West thinks, according to one of Wall Street's most distinguished voices on the region...

China Shadow Banking Is Slowing amid More Coordinated Government Measures, Says Moody’s

Huileng Tan
CNBC
Growth in shadow banking in China is slowing due to coordinated government action to contain systemic financial risks, a development that will benefit banks, although it will also bring adjustment risks.

Why China’s New Cargo Space Ship Is So Important

Namrata Goswami
Diplomat
China’s first indigenously built Tianzhou cargo ship, which is being launched between April 20 and 24, is a major accomplishment.

China Rolls Back Taxes by $55 Billion to Encourage Consumer Spending and Boost Growth

CNBC
China is cutting taxes this year by 380 billion yuan ($55 billion) in efforts to encourage spending and boost growth.

China Plan to Create New Shenzhen Spurs Speculative Rampage

Lisa Pham and Jenny Yu
Bloomberg
Within 24 hours of Saturday’s announcement that the government would create the Xiongan area in Hebei province—in the same spirit that Shenzhen and Shanghai’s Pudong was built—hordes of prospective buyers had thronged to the region.

Nation Leads Asia in Growth Vitality

China Daily
Despite setbacks to regional economic integration, China maintained a 6.7 percent growth rate last year and contributed 33.2 percent to global economic growth, ranking the highest among all world economies.

China Just Held Its National People’s Congress. Here Are Three Key Points.

Lynette Ong
Washington Post
For decades, China’s “Two Sessions” (lianghui) each spring have offered a glimpse into the policies and priorities of China’s Communist Party (CCP).

Caixin Media

03.03.17

China’s Legislators Take on Zombie Companies, Real Estate

Curbing wasteful socialist-era business practices and taming unruly real estate and lending sectors will take center stage at the annual meeting of China’s legislature, which starts next week, with some also looking for signs of a pickup in economic...

China’s Growing Obesity Problem

Benjamin Shobert
Forbes
A recent study published shows that China can now lay claim to having a greater percentage of obese men and women than in the United States.

China’s Economy Grows Strongly, Yet Central Bank Eases Policy

Keith Bradsher
New York Times
China’s economy firmly hit its growth target last year, but this is China, where figures are sometimes doubted and where economists look for signs of strain underneath the numbers.

Asian Shares Mixed as Investors Eye Trump’s Inauguration

Aza Wee Sile
CNBC
Asian markets were a mixed bag on Friday after China’s latest set of economic data suggest the economy is recovering, even as risk sentiment sours ahead of Donald Trump’s inauguration

Viewpoint

01.19.17

Do We Want to Live in China’s World?

Robert Daly
Each weekday morning, I cross D.C.’s National Mall and pass a sign on Constitution Avenue bearing an epigram by the U.S. architect Daniel Burnham: Make No Little Plans. And every morning, these words make me think not of Burnham’s 20th century...

The Chinese Government Finally Admitted That Its Economic Data Was Made Up

Zheping Huang
Quartz
For many who have long believed that China’s economic growth figures seemed too good—and tidy—to be true, they now have official confirmation of that skepticism.

Books

01.11.17

Taiwan’s China Dilemma

Syaru Shirley Lin
China and Taiwan share one of the world’s most complex international relationships. Although similar cultures and economic interests have promoted an explosion of economic ties between them since the late 1980s, these ties have not led to an improved political relationship, let alone progress toward the unification that both governments once claimed to seek. In addition, Taiwan’s recent Sunflower Movement succeeded in obstructing deeper economic ties with China. Why has Taiwan’s policy toward China been so inconsistent?Taiwan’s China Dilemma explains the divergence between the development of economic and political relations across the Taiwan Strait through the interplay of national identity and economic interests. Using primary sources, opinion surveys, and interviews with Taiwanese opinion leaders, Syaru Shirley Lin paints a vivid picture of one of the most unsettled and dangerous relationships in the contemporary world, and illustrates the growing backlash against economic liberalization and regional economic integration around the world. —Stanford University Press{chop}

China Should Set More Flexible GDP Growth Target in 2017: Central Bank Adviser

Reuters
China should set a more flexible economic growth target this year to create more room for reforms, a central bank adviser told the official Xinhua news agency, suggesting a range of 6.0 to 7.0 percent versus 6.5 to 7.0 percent in 2016. China has...

These Three Major China Themes Will Be Pivotal in 2017

Aidan Yao
South China Morning Post
China’s economic growth target, the depreciation of the yuan and a looming change in several senior Communist Party positions will be important factors

Trump’s Misleading Comparison of the U.S. and Chinese Economies

Ian Talley
Wall Street Journal
Emerging markets run faster than advanced economies because of the rule of diminishing returns

Economists Question China’s Consistent Growth Numbers

Mark Magnier
Wall Street Journal
China says its economy grew 6.7% for the third consecutive quarter

Unlike the West, China and India Embrace Globalization

Bruce Stokes
Quartz
In contrast with the developed West, globalization and economic integration remain popular in the world’s two largest developing countries—India and China.

Is China Building a Road to Ruin?

Andrew Browne
Wall Street Journal
China beats the U.S. on infrastructure but at a heavy cost

Goldman Sachs: China Signaling Further Stimulus on the Way

Leslie Shaffer
CNBC
The bank pointed to China’s State Council meeting this week, which discussed plans to streamline the approval process for investment projects.

In China, Economic Data Highlights Growing Divide Between Regions

Mark Magnier
Wall Street Journal
Provinces’ first-half figures for GDP growth also have revived the debate over the country’s statistics.

Caixin Media

06.30.16

Chinese Investment in Euro Soccer Soars to Meet President’s Goals

Chinese companies are buying soccer teams across Europe, echoing the Beijing government’s ambitious plan to turn the nation into a soccer powerhouse.The powerhouse plan, which has backing from President Xi Jinping, has led to nine deals inked by...

China’s Li Sees Increasing Uncertainties After Brexit Vote

Bloomberg
Sill, Premier Li Keqiang argues his nation has ample tools to meet challenges facing the economy.

Sinica Podcast

06.20.16

Arthur Kroeber vs. the Conventional Wisdom

Kaiser Kuo, Jeremy Goldkorn & more
In this episode of Sinica, we present an in-depth interview with Arthur Kroeber, the founding partner and head of research for Gavekal Dragonomics, an independent global economic research firm, and the editor-in-chief of its journal, China Economic...

Conversation

05.24.16

How Much Debt Is Too Much in China?

Yukon Huang, Houze Song & more
In the first quarter of 2016, Chinese debt rose to 237 percent of GDP—a level comparable to that of the U.S. or the Eurozone and yet much larger than that of most developing economies, according to analysis by The Financial Times. Additionally,...

Media

05.12.16

The End of China’s Economic Miracle? A Discussion with ‘Financial Times’ Writers

George Soros, Jamil Anderlini & more
On April 20, 2016, a panel of Financial Times correspondents and editors with China experience, joined by financier and occasional FT columnist George Soros, discussed rural-to-urban migration, wage growth, real estate ups and downs, the increasing...

Books

04.18.16

China’s Future

David Shambaugh
China’s future arguably is the most consequential question in global affairs. Having enjoyed unprecedented levels of growth, China is at a critical juncture in the development of its economy, society, polity, national security, and international relations. The direction the nation takes at this turning point will determine whether it stalls or continues to develop and prosper.Will China be successful in implementing a new wave of transformational reforms that could last decades and make it the world’s leading superpower? Or will its leaders shy away from the drastic changes required because the regime’s power is at risk? If so, will that lead to prolonged stagnation or even regime collapse? Might China move down a more liberal or even democratic path? Or will China instead emerge as a hard, authoritarian, and aggressive superstate?In this new book, David Shambaugh argues that these potential pathways are all possibilities—but they depend on key decisions yet to be made by China’s leaders, different pressures from within Chinese society, as well as actions taken by other nations. Assessing these scenarios and their implications, he offers a thoughtful and clear study of China’s future for all those seeking to understand the country’s likely trajectory over the coming decade and beyond. —Polity Press{chop}

Caixin Media

02.19.16

Central Bank Governor on Reforming the Exchange Rate, Adopting a Digital Currency

Recently Zhou Xiaochuan, Governor of the People’s Bank of China (PBOC), China’s central bank, had an interview with Caixin and talked about the yuan exchange rate regime reform, macro-prudential policy framework, digital currency, and other topics...

How Xi Jinping Sees the World ... and Why

Jeffrey A. Bader
Brookings Institution
Large national transformations are more often the product of historical forces than the writ of one powerful leader.

China: Scaling The World’s Highest Innovation Peaks

Vikram Jandhyala
TechCrunch
The word “innovation” was mentioned 71 times in a communiqué after the Chinese Communist Party’s recent plenary meeting. 

Three Labour Rights Leaders Detained In China As Worker Unrest Grows

Neil Connor
Telegraph
Activist detentions follow a growth in discontent among workers affected by China's stalling economy...

Notes on the China I’m Leaving Behind

ANDREW JACOBS
New York Times
I GOT together at a restaurant the other night with some Chinese and expatriate friends.

China's Obesity Epidemic: Teaching Children to 'Eat a Rainbow'

Lucy Luo
Guardian
The rise in diabetes in China could bankrupt the country’s healthcare system, says a medical expert.

China Seeks to Remove Provincial Barriers to Trade

Sue-Lin Wong
Reuters
China will accelerate reforms to remove internal barriers to both foreign and domestic trade.

Media

11.13.15

The Real Reason for China’s Two-Child Policy: Millions of New Consumers

Two fictitious Chinese brothers are born in Tuanjiehu Maternity Hospital in the Chinese capital of Beijing. Let’s say the first was born already, in late 2015; his parents nickname him Laoda, meaning “oldest child.” That’s because they have hopes...

How Smartphones are Solving One of China’s Biggest Mysteries

Ana Swanson
Washington Post
For decades, China has been engaged in a building boom of a scale that is hard to wrap your mind around.

China’s Communist Party Approves Five-Year Plan

Mark Magnier
Wall Street Journal
Economists will be watching to see whether it sets ambitious or moderate growth targets.

Li Floats New China Five-Year Growth Minimum of Around 6.5%

Bloomberg
China’s goal of a “moderately prosperous society” refers to policy makers’ plan to double per-capita income by 2020 from 2010 levels.

How Hungry Is China for the World's Food?

John W. Schoen
CNBC
China's transformation from an agrarian economy remains a work in progress...

Caixin Media

10.20.15

Moving 2 Million People for Beijing’s Urban Reset

Nearly 2 million Beijing residents will be moved to the city’s outlying districts from the center by 2020 as part of a massive urban revamp designed to better control people, traffic, and smog.The movers include up to 1 million government workers...

China’s Middle Class Has Overtaken the U.S.’s to Become the World’s Largest

Zheping Huang
Quartz
China has crossed another economic threshold.

Caixin Media

10.13.15

Insider Trading Is Hindering Development of Stock Market

A series of investigations into apparent market violations emerged after the recent stock market turmoil, bringing down Zhang Yujun, an assistant chairman at the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC); Cheng Boming, general manager of CITIC...

Once the Biggest Buyer, China Starts Dumping U.S. Government Debt

Min Zeng and Lingling Wei
Wall Street Journal
Shift in Treasury holdings is latest symptom of emerging-market slowdown hitting global economy.

Putting the Past Behind in China

Chris Horton
New York Times
The days of China’s relying on export manufacturing and infrastructure construction as drivers of economic growth are gone.